Snow Owls | WYPR

Snow Owls

Dec 20, 2016

Credit Tony Hisgett

Just a few weeks ago, I got some exciting news.

Some colleagues, all enthusiastic birders, I.D.’d a snowy owl sitting atop the Bay Bridge on the second to last lane signal on the eastbound span. It’s still early in the season, but this unusual visit could mean another year of these unmistakable, rare white owls visiting our shores.

You’d know a snowy owl if you saw one. Just imagine Hedwig, the famous owl from the Harry Potter movies. The mostly-ivory birds have smoothly rounded heads with no ear tufts, a dark bill and striking, yellow, cat-like eyes. The juveniles and the females have varied amounts of brown scalloping and spotting on their snow-colored feathers.